“Click. Click. Click. Click.” It’s a distinctive, satisfying sound when the bike shoe clips on to the pedal. Most of the time, though, we only need to hear two clicks to signal readiness for action and connection to the bike. For the Crusher EX, though, Ryan and I ride a tandem mountain bike from 616 Bicycle Fabrication. Our first Crusher (it was called the HAMR back in 2018) was a learning experience, and if you want to read about our journey to becoming tandem owners and the struggle-bus that was our 2018 HAMR, you can find the link to the Crusher blog that we wrote here : https://crushergravel.com/details/stories/doing-hard-things/
For 2022, we registered for the EX version of the Crusher 40 mile course. Through the years, we have run this race with a changing cast of characters, some of whom do this race exactly ONCE with us and then never bike with us again. However, Cara and Darren Bartle have stuck with us and we have become a team trekking through the UP wilderness. They joined us again this year as we rolled out on a cool Sunday morning from Koski Corners to start what we expected to be a 50 mile journey. It was a lovely morning, especially on the Peshekee Grade. The beauty of the UP never ceases to amaze us, and we feel lucky when we have the chance to get out and enjoy it.
The Crusher is an annual reset for us. A day in the woods, working on our communication and having a common goal of accomplishing something hard.